Effect of surface roughness on substrate-tuned gold nanoparticle gap plasmon resonances
The effect of nanoscale surface roughness on the gap plasmon resonance of gold nanoparticles on thermally evaporated gold films is investigated experimentally and numerically. Single-particle scattering spectra obtained from 80 nm diameter gold particles on a gold film show significant particle-to-particle variation of the peak scattering wavelength of ±28 nm. The experimental results are compared with numerical simulations of gold nanoparticles positioned on representative rough gold surfaces, modeled based on atomic force microscopy measurements. The predicted spectral variation and average resonance wavelength show good agreement with the measured data. The study shows that nanometer scale surface roughness can significantly affect the performance of gap plasmon-based devices.